Ecnomic and societal issues Emily's mother faced in "I Stand Here Ironing" I am trying to gather as many of these isssues as I can out of the story. I am writing a short essay for my college English class. I am not sure if I am on the right path or not. So far I have gathered that the story took place around the great depression and that the mother is a part of the poor working class. I am lost on the direction that I should go on my paper. My thesis question is, "How do economic and social circumstances affect the ability to take care of Emily?"

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At the time of the setting of "I Stand Here Ironing," divorce was not common, nor was the abandonment of a father from his family.  So, when Emily's mother is separated from her husband she feels especially bereft and guilty.  Without other single-mother families to whom Emily can identify, she feels isolated, abandoned.

In addition, the Depression-era generation never forgot what deprivation they experienced despite the comfortable economic times of the 1950, so there was a large "generation gap" between them and their children who knew little of such deprivation.  As a consequence, Emily does not understand her mother's having to relinquish her to a home and the lack of time that her mother had for her.

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